Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Avoidance strategies can be valuable stress reliever, says study on work/life/school balance

Date:
July 9, 2013
Source:
University of Toronto, Rotman School of Management
Summary:
If achieving a work/life balance wasn't hard enough, researchers say many of us are juggling a third factor: school. That creates conflicts, often resulting in dissatisfaction in the area that caused that conflict. But avoidance techniques can help, their most recent study shows.

If achieving a work/life balance wasn't hard enough, researchers say many of us are juggling a third factor: school.

That creates conflicts, say Bonnie Cheng, a PhD candidate at the University of Toronto's Rotman School of Management, and Julie McCarthy, an associate professor at the Rotman School and the University of Toronto Scarborough, often resulting in dissatisfaction in the area that caused that conflict. For example, skipping a family function to stay late at work can lead to less satisfaction with work.

But avoidance techniques can help, their most recent study shows. Using a group of undergraduate students who also worked outside of school and had family responsibilities, the researchers surveyed them at two different points in time to gauge how much conflict students were experiencing from their competing responsibilities, the different coping mechanisms they used to deal with them, and how much satisfaction they derived from their activities.

The study found that students who used avoidance strategies, such as not dwelling on their problems, were better able to manage conflict across work, family, and school, and experienced more satisfaction.

"Our intuitive notion of avoidance is that it's counter-productive, that it's running away from your problems," says Cheng. But, she says, there are different kinds of avoidance.

"We found that while wishing for your problems to magically disappear is counterproductive, the process of taking your mind off the problems at hand actually helped people manage multiple role responsibilities and increased their satisfaction."

The trick, she stresses, is not allowing avoidance to slip into escapism. The finding is equally applicable to any situation where people are juggling multiple role responsibilities, Including volunteering and coaching.

The key point for managing multiple roles is that people are giving their minds the occasional break.. Workplaces and schools can do this by providing places such as lounges where people can go to detach a little, by socializing, meditating, listening to music, or whatever works best for them.

Cheng says the study's findings point to strategies that can empower individuals to manage work, family, and school responsibilities.

"That's not to devalue organizational initiatives," she says. "We see this as something people can do on their own, in tandem with organizational initiatives," she says.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Toronto, Rotman School of Management. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Toronto, Rotman School of Management. "Avoidance strategies can be valuable stress reliever, says study on work/life/school balance." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 9 July 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/07/130709124136.htm>.
University of Toronto, Rotman School of Management. (2013, July 9). Avoidance strategies can be valuable stress reliever, says study on work/life/school balance. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/07/130709124136.htm
University of Toronto, Rotman School of Management. "Avoidance strategies can be valuable stress reliever, says study on work/life/school balance." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/07/130709124136.htm (accessed October 21, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Your Birth Season Might Determine Your Temperament

Your Birth Season Might Determine Your Temperament

Newsy (Oct. 20, 2014) A new study says the season you're born in can determine your temperament — and one season has a surprising outcome. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Court Ruling Means Kids' Online Activity Could Be On Parents

Court Ruling Means Kids' Online Activity Could Be On Parents

Newsy (Oct. 17, 2014) In a ruling attorneys for both sides agreed was a first of its kind, a Georgia appeals court said parents can be held liable for what kids put online. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Best Foods To Boost Your Mood

The Best Foods To Boost Your Mood

Buzz60 (Oct. 17, 2014) Feeling down? Reach for the refrigerator, not the medicine cabinet! TC Newman (@PurpleTCNewman) shares some of the best foods to boost your mood. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
You Can Get Addicted To Google Glass, Apparently

You Can Get Addicted To Google Glass, Apparently

Newsy (Oct. 15, 2014) Researchers claim they’ve diagnosed the first example of the disorder in a 31-year-old U.S. Navy serviceman. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins